Giving good Motörhead 1

A few years ago, Motörhead gave their name to a bunch of earphones and headphones. Which seems logical enough. I work for a hifi shop, and put several of the ‘phones onto the website.

I doubt I’ll be doing listings for their latest piece of branding. The band has teamed up with online sex toy shop Lovehoney to release a brand of sex toys, each named for one of their songs. There’s no information in the report of which songs and what type of toys- that’ll be announced later this month- so feel free to make your best Ace of Spades puns.

(It should come as no surprise that the links above go to rude places. You have been warned, if you hadn’t already guessed.)

Source: Motörhead Gets Its Own Sex Toy Collection From Lovehoney

Booze, Blood and Noise: The Violent Roots of Manchester Punk

“It was a peculiarity of late license laws in Manchester at the time that food had to be available until the premises closed,” says Taylor. “When the police raided, one of the first things they would check was that there was food available, because if you didn’t have it they would shut down the club and kick everyone into the street immediately.”

via Booze, Blood and Noise: The Violent Roots of Manchester Punk — Cuepoint — Medium.

Morrissey may play at Summer In The City in Castlefield

Personally, I can’t stand Morrissey- he’s an obnoxious sixth form poet who had the good fortune to be backed by a bunch of more interesting and talented musicians- but some people seem to like him, so I shall share the news.

Morrissey to play Summer In The City at Castlefield Bowl – Manchester Evening News.

The Inspiral Carpets to release ‘lost’ debut album for Record Store Day | Live4ever Ezine

‘Dung 4‘, the cassette-only album from the Inspiral Carpets which preceded their more conventional debut LP ‘Life‘ in 1989, is to be re-released for this year’s Record Store Day.

Cherry Records will for the first time issue the album on CD and vinyl formats on April 19th

via The Inspiral Carpets to release ‘lost’ debut album for Record Store Day | Live4ever Ezine.

The 8:15 To Manchester

Manchester Indie Bands Rail Map Art Poster by indieprints on Etsy

Manchester Indie Bands Rail Map Art Poster by indieprints on Etsy


I’ve written before about the Radio 2 series The Peoples Songs. A few weeks ago, they did an episode about musicals and I tweeted about my desire for a MadChester based one. A piece of whimsy I soon forgot about.

Then I found out about Sunshine On Leith.

If the Proclaimers can have a musical, then surely there’s room for one dedicated to dodging the rain and the bullets.

It’s still whimsy, but I’m going to kick ideas around and something may yet come of it. I’ll probably have a list of songs from ’88 to ’93 that I’d love to see in a film before I have any hint of the story they’d be hung on. But it’s a great excuse to create myself a Madchester playlist and watch videos like this-

Ten Shades of Grey

Times we spent cheating and lying
Wondering when we would be back by your side again
Hoping and praying to get through the day
I need your attention to see through the fray
It’s night again all the time
Shadows are lurking but I can’t find mine
People look at me as they flood through the door
I need your attention not theirs anymore
And the light from the candle goes dim
as I slip deeper down from the brim
The people are fading away
As I slip into colours then ten shades of grey
If I don’t last this one tell them when I’ve gone
That playing with you was incredible fun

Terrorvision- Ten Shades of Grey, from How To Make Friends And Influence People

Against my better judgement, I read a little bit more of Fifty Shades of Grey last night. Still no characters or sex and I’m 13% in.

A Hi-Fi in your pocket

Some times, I’d like to listen to music when I’m out and about. But I have no desire for an iPod, and I don’t want to use my phone as a music player. And I work for a company that sells hifis, so I aspire to something better than an Apple product. So today I went looking for portable media players that could do justice to high quality files. I haven’t had a chance to test any of them, but I found a few with very impressive specifications, with prices to match.

At the top end of the price range, coming in at over a grand, is the Astell & Kern AK120. It’s very stylishly finished and can hold up to 192Gb of music, thanks to two micro SD card slots. It also has very potent digital to analogue conversion, capable of decoding “master tape quality” files (24bit/192kHZ, CD quality is 16bit/44.1kHZ) and outputting them at the quality they deserve. (You’ll need to get headphones worthy of the output, though, and that could easily be several hundred pounds more). The AK120 is for someone who travels first class and wants the sound to go with it, not we pleb s who catch the bus.

There is an AK100, which comes in at about half the price. It has less storage and lower grade (but still very good) components, but should still provide excellent audio.

Coming in at about the same price as the AK100, and looking gorgeous, is the Colorfly C4. I think it lacks some of the clever features of the AK100, but just look at that lovely walnut case.

Closer to the price of an iPod, and something I might be able to afford, is the C4’s little brother, the Colorfly C3. It only sports 8Gb, but it’s also not up to master quality audio, just CD quality, so the files you stick on it are going to be smaller. You’d need to get earphones or headphones worth £50 or so to match the quality of the output, of course, but it would be worth it.

It’s time to start saving.

The Manchester Cowboy

The Manchester Cowboy, originally uploaded by spinneyhead.

David Thomas Jones is perhaps better known as Davy Jones of the Monkees. We found this headstone dedicated to him in Gorton Cemetery. He was born in Openshaw and appeared in Coronation Street before heading to the States to become a heart throb, so it’s an appropriate place for a memorial.

Hear This Now- The People’s Songs 1

The People’s Songs is one of those quintessentially BBC projects. Using 50 songs as springboards, it’s a musical and cultural history of Britain since the Second World War. As the name suggests, it’s all about how they affected ordinary people, rather than academics or celebrities. It’s fascinating stuff, narrated with his usual wordplay by Stuart Maconie.

You can listen to The People’s Songs on iPlayer.

Fuck the Revolution

It’s easy to mock Saint Bono (and I’m sure I have, many times), but I can forgive him any amount of self important nonsense and pretentious twaddle for this performance.

Earlier that day, an IRA bomb killed eleven people at a Remembrance Day ceremony in the Northern Irish town of Enniskillen (see Remembrance Day Bombing). During a performance of “Sunday Bloody Sunday”, which appears on the film, Bono condemned the violence in a furious mid-song rant in which he yelled “Fuck the revolution.” So powerful was the performance, that the band said they were not sure the song should have been used in the film, and after watching the film, they considered not playing it on future tours. (from wikipedia)

I got the same chills watching that just now as I did when I first saw it twenty-odd years ago. I’m with Bono on this one. Fuck the revolution. Fuck the jihad. Fuck the Intifada and the IDF. Fuck the drones. Fuck any belief system that says it’s okay to kill civilians for the cause.